Two bits of wood, a clothes-hanger and some sticky-back plastic……

Britice-Chrono NERC Consortium

By Richard Chiverrell

2-3 days ago the RRS James Cook voyaged towards the deeper waters of the Porcupine Bank, a lesser known quarter of the continental shelf off western Ireland. Leaving the coastline of Donegal and Mayo in our wake for our remote destination 213,000 m west of dry land, but with key essentials to sustain us. Stocks were replete with plentiful willpower, pineapple juice, fresh water, vibrocore tubes, melon, bacon and eggs. As we progressed south the harder grounds that lay ahead, our target to sample the sediment of the seafloor continues to make mince-meat of the steel core-catchers. We use these to ensure the valuable muds and shells do not fall out of the vibrocore chamber as we return it to deck after the radio call sign ‘….bottom operations are completed, over, roger…’. The core catcher is an ingenious device that fits into the base of the vibrocore…

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